In the News

The F.A.M.I.L.Y. Foundation in the news.

FAMILY Foundation Board of Directors member James Sturdivant featured in an interview at work. He works for the American Institutes for Research. Here is a reprint from the company publication. Thanks James for sharing.

F.A.M.I.L.Y (Family for the Advancement of Matriculation In Learning Youth)



                                                                                                        James Sturdivant


 James Sturdivant, Associate Project Accountant in Silver Spring, is a founding member of F.A.M.I.L.Y (Family for the Advancement of Matriculation in Learning Youth). The foundation is an organization whose primary purpose is to provide financial and educational assistance to those in need. Originally named the BDSNM Foundation (Bidgood, Dargan, Sturdivant, Nance and McClain), the foundation began to form when descendants of Olivier and Emmaline Sturdivant (who were brought to this country as slaves in the late 1700’s)  wanted to come together and find a way  to give back to the community. In May 2007, the BDSNM Family Foundation was signed into existence, and James Sturdivant has been on the board of directors since.  We interviewed James about his involvement with F.A.M.I.L.Y:


Why the F.A.M.I.L.Y. Foundation?

 I have heard much discussion about the need to make  higher education more accessible among low income high schools students. The foundation developed from a family reunion discussion about “what can we do beyond celebrating family, enjoy the flavor of family, and food?  The result was “Let’s start a foundation that will award scholarships to needy high school students.”

What role do you play within the foundation?

As a founding member of the board of Directors, I participated in its creation and design. I serve as the Assistant Treasurer, and thus as a member of the Finance Committee that enables me to provide valuable advice and counsel on important financial matters. 
This past year I went to some high schools in the Washington metropolitan area to solicit applications from students to apply for the foundation scholarships. When one of the students won the scholarship I went to the schools’ awards ceremony and presented the award personally to her. Today, she is in her first year of college at Virginia Union University in Richmond, Virginia. Her name is Galisa Ferrell. Galisa was the Valedictorian of her graduating class from Joel Elias Spingarn High School in Washington D. C. It was personally rewarding for me to present this award to Galisa since I am an alumnus of Spingarn High School. There is more information about Galisa on the foundation website at                                                               


    Galisa Ferrell and her mother, Yolander Ferrell-Sermon 

   James Sturdivant, Galisa Ferrell, Kristen Reynolds

Why do you think the foundation is successful?

I see BDSNM doing a superb good job as it allows family members to connect with the world around us and give added meaning to the lives of students. It also allows the family to transcend their own being as they give. The foundation will stay with each student throughout their four years of college study. The foundation’s vision is to continually request and receive grants and contributions from individuals, corporations and other foundations. This year the first corporate donor was the American Institute for Research. Kristen Reynolds, Co-chair AIR Charitable Giving Committee, facilitated that $1,000 AIR grant and participated in the presenting the award to the receiving student, Galisa Ferrell.